MORE than 120 people braved the cold to raise funds for a charity supporting rough sleepers in the area.

The Big Basingstoke Sleep Out, which is organised and hosted by Julian House, a charity helping vulnerable and at-risk individuals, took place on Friday, March 15 at May's Bounty cricket ground.

Participants created shelter using only cardboard and plastic sheeting, as well as sleeping bags and roll mats, to create a 'better understanding of what vulnerable people have to go through every day'.

READ MORE: Basingstoke man nicknamed 'Iron Kidney' to compete in British Transplant Games

Basingstoke Gazette: Kelly Davies and Jon Bateman

The event, which raised £7,514 at the time of writing, saw a number of people take part, from Scouts to work colleagues.

Ten-year-old Logan Crockford, from Tadley Primary, said he was 'intrigued and wanted to help' after being visited at school by a representative from Julian House.

Brianna Austin, 12, from Basingstoke 6th Scouts said: "We decided to do this because we walk past homeless people when we go to town and stuff.

"It’s heartbreaking to see them sat there with barely anything.

"If we can feel how they feel for one night, next time we’re donating to charities we can be more generous, because we’ll know a little bit about how hard it can be."

Jodie Marsh-Hoffmann, known as Junk Jodie for her sustainable artwork created with recycled materials, also took part, as well as running a craft workshop for children, creating fairies. 

The artist, from Basingstoke, says she hopes the money raised will 'help make a difference in someone's life.'

During the workshop, nine-year-old Lucy Powell told the Gazette, whilst making a fairy out of paper and scrap materials: "I've made a passionate fairy because I am passionate about doing this tonight, and wanting to make a difference."

SEE ALSO: Flashback: How the battle of the supermarkets evolved in Basingstoke

Basingstoke Gazette: Amie Rowland, Katie Rowland-Saxby and Lydia Kilmartin, a student at Chalk Ridge primary

Residents Jon Bateman and Kelly Davies said it was their first time camping without an air bed or tent. They added: "It makes you realise what people have to go through."

First-timers Phoebe Mendes and Jenny Meade, said: "We slept really well, we were a bit nervous at first, but our cardboard shelter stayed up and we will definitely do it again.

"What the charity stands for is quite close to our heart, so we thought we would kick off the year fundraising."

Organiser of the event, Gavin Osborn, said that whilst he knows one night in the cold doesn't compare to challenges faced by rough sleepers, the event leaves people with a 'better understanding of what vulnerable people have to go through every day.'

To donate to Julian House, visit, 100 per cent of all donations will go towards funding the charity's vital work, including an outreach team in Basingstoke.